Under the Apple
Heather Marie Philipp
Yours is a very eclectic sample. Many styles combine in these haunting tunes, but invariably, they create an inviting canvas for your sensuous vocals. I hear hints of jazzy Cassandra Wilson, feeling-saturated Radiohead, breath-carressing Joss Stone, and delicately-poignant David Sylvian.
I would dare classify this album in the soft-jazz milieu. “To Remember You” and the Miles Davis tinged “clear blue sky” certainly veer in that direction. However, it were the songs that deviate from the readily-classifiable format that moved me the most. My favorite is “Love Blind.” I find it truly amazing: gorgeous melody, and lyrics. the band backs you up perfectly, so very tastefully. A nice, driving beat, thick, syrupy timbres that wonderfully compliment your vocal quality. It reminds me a bit of Fiona Apple and Lizz Wright.
“Courting Stars” accentuates the sensual in your voice, as you trade licks with the stand-up bass. The odd-time passages in the middle are a welcome surprise, bringing a lop-sided roll to the end of the chorus. sweet.
The instruments in “Snow Fell” lay down a melancholy background that allows the space for your voice to soar. Driven by a mysterious and moving string ensemble and a graceful electric piano counterpoint, this track sinks into a mystifying white, wintry landscape, where the only sounds are the softly falling snowflakes. “Under the Apple” seems to have a similar quality, a sparse universe of subtle tones that fall like rain as we walk with you on autumn leaf-strewn streets.
These songs bring out your best. They possess elegant tensions, originality and a seeming frailty that falls away to reveal power in the subtle.